2022 NBA Free Agency Rankings:
- Point Guard Rankings
- Shooting Guard Rankings
- Small Forward Rankings
- Power Forward Rankings
- Center Rankings
With the NBA Finals coming to an end a couple of weeks ago and the NBA Draft coming and going, all of the league’s attention now turns to “Christmas in July,” which is also known as NBA Free Agency.
Every single summer, the NBA winds up stealing the show in the sports world because of the craziness that is free agency and because of how every team scrambles to make moves in order to get a leg up on one another.
While we have seen plenty of championship teams built through the draft over the last couple of decades, free agency still plays a pivotal role in many team’s chances to contend for a title, especially if they are able to pair All-Star talents with one another!
Frontcourt talents are not as utilized as they used to be in the NBA, but we are still seeing plenty of versatile forwards and big men stretch the floor at power forwards.
Whether it is aiding in rebounding, knocking shots down from the perimeter or being all-around stars, the power-forward position has really changed in the NBA to be a “utility-like” position, aiding each team in a certain area.
This offseason, there is a great blend of power forward talents available in free agency.
Notable Names: Jalen Smith (Indiana Pacers), Juancho Hernangomez (Utah Jazz), Blake Griffin (Brooklyn Nets), Paul Millsap (Philadelphia 76ers)
#10 Carmelo Anthony - Unrestricted Free Agent
2021-22 Salary: $2,641,691 | Last Team: Los Angeles Lakers | Expected: Veteran’s Minimum to Mid-Level Exception
Now through 19 seasons in the NBA, Carmelo Anthony is definitely nearing the end of what will undoubtedly be a Hall-of-Fame career. While he is now 38-years-old, it does not appear as if Carmelo will be retiring, which is why all the attention for him is on his 20th season in the league and what team he will be a part of.
As of right now, it is safe to assume that Anthony will receive minimum contract offers from teams around the league, but his market could heat up a little bit should there be a couple of teams that are vying for the ten-time All-Star. There is still a level of interest within the Los Angeles Lakers organization to bring Carmelo Anthony back as the team’s sixth man.
#9 Thaddeus Young - Unrestricted Free Agent
2021-22 Salary: $14,190,000 | Last Team: Toronto Raptors | Expected: Mid-Level Exception to $8M per year
He may not be a high-level talent or someone that can take control of a game, but Thaddeus Young is the epitome of a role player in the NBA. Young simply gets his job done and he can wear quite a few hats while on the floor.
Thad Young has always been a reliable scorer in the paint, he has proven to be a factor rebounding over the last few seasons and he is a very smart on-ball defender, giving any team in this league an experienced veteran that can play anywhere from 20-25 minutes per game in the low-post. Expect to see a few teams bidding on Young in free agency.
#8 Otto Porter Jr. - Unrestricted Free Agent
2021-22 Salary: $2,389,641 | Last Team: Golden State Warriors | Expected: Mid-Level Exception
With the Golden State Warriors this past year, Otto Porter Jr. proved to be a factor when on the floor and he hit some big shots throughout the NBA Playoffs, including in the NBA Finals. Health has always been a problem for Porter and it has caused him to not reach his full potential as the former third overall pick in 2013, but at 29-years-old, Porter can still be an impactful sixth man-like talent for any team needing a sharpshooting wing that can also aid in rebounding.
Coming off a minimum contract with Golden State, Otto Porter Jr. is expected to see some offers from other teams this offseason using part of their mid-level exception and using their full mid-level exceptions. Maybe he will be willing to take less money than the full MLE to return to the Warriors, but it is hard to see him signing another minimum deal.
#7 Kyle Anderson - Unrestricted Free Agent
2021-22 Salary: $9,937,150 | Last Team: Memphis Grizzlies | Expected: Mid-Level Exception to $10M per year
With the Memphis Grizzlies, Kyle Anderson has been utilized as a “do-it-all” type of player that can extend his game from the low-post to out on the perimeter. A slower paced and methodical forward, Anderson has a calming nature to his game and he has turned himself into a very important “glue guy” in this league.
The last four seasons in Memphis, Anderson has averaged 8.5 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 1.1 steals and has shot 47.5% from the floor. His length and ability to defend multiple positions is what makes him a very intriguing free agent this summer, however, some teams are said to be hesitant to offer him more than their mid-level exception because of his lack of productivity scoring.
#6 Marvin Bagley III - Restricted Free Agent
2021-22 Salary: $11,312,114 | Last Team: Detroit Pistons | Expected: $10M to $14M per year
Moving from the Sacramento Kings to the Detroit Pistons this past year, Marvin Bagley III has seemed to have found a home where his style of play works. Being a factor rebounding on both ends of the floor, as well as being a threat in pick-and-roll situations offensively, Bagley played well next to Cade Cunningham in Detroit and will likely see more success with the arrival of Jaden Ivey, the fifth overall pick in this year’s draft.
Things are trending towards the Pistons offering Bagley a new deal that could pay him upwards of $40 million to $50 million in total, likely meaning that he would be their starting power-forward with Jerami Grant gone. Still being just 23-years-old, Marvin Bagley has plenty of room for growth as a stretch big man.
#5 Nicolas Batum - Unrestricted Free Agent
2021-22 Salary: $3,170,029 | Last Team: Los Angeles Clippers | Expected: Mid-Level Exception to $8M per year
He may have opted out of his player option for the 2022-23 season, but Nicolas Batum has been working out with the Los Angeles Clippers still and is expected to return to the team on a new deal. Some teams may look to reach out to the veteran and offer him a little more than the Clippers can, but Batum has really found a home in Los Angeles next to Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.
The Clippers will enter the 2022-23 season as true title threats in the Western Conference and Batum will continue to be a large part of their success as a stretch forward that aids the team in three-point shooting and rebounding.
#4 Chris Boucher - Unrestricted Free Agent
2021-22 Salary: $7,020,000 | Last Team: Toronto Raptors | Expected: $8M to $14M per year
A very intriguing free agent, Chris Boucher has a chance to be a “sleeper” signee this offseason. Nobody seems to want to talk about Boucher’s skill on the court, but he is a very sound big man that has not only proven to be an avid rim-protector, but a big man who can play a couple of different positions and also knock down shots from the perimeter.
With the Toronto Raptors this past season, Boucher averaged 9.4 points, 6.2 rebounds, 0.9 blocks and shot 46.4% from the floor, proving that he can be a force off-the-bench. For any team looking to upgrade their rebounding depth and frontcourt depth, Chris Boucher would be a very good find. Expect teams like the Toronto Raptors, Minnesota Timberwolves, Sacramento Kings, Portland Trail Blazers and Indiana Pacers to show interest in Boucher.
#3 Bobby Portis - Player Option (DECLINED)
2022-23 Option: $4,564,980 | Current Team: Milwaukee Bucks | Expected: Opt out, re-sign with MIL
Updated 6/29/22: Portis has opted out of his player option for the 2022-23 season, becoming an unrestricted free agent, and will likely reach a long-term agreement with Milwaukee when free agency begins.
As of right now, it seems like Bobby Portis could be opting out of his player option for the 2022-23 season, but while he will be an unrestricted free agent, many expect Portis to re-sign with the Milwaukee Bucks on a new long-term deal.
Portis is beloved by his teammates and the entire Bucks’ fan base, which is why the team would like to restructure his deal this offseason. Proving to be the team’s sixth man and a factor offensively, Bobby Portis has truly found a home in Milwaukee.
#2 P.J. Tucker - Unrestricted Free Agent
2022-23 Option: $7,000,000 | Last Team: Miami Heat | Expected: Mid-Level Exception to $10M per year
P.J. Tucker’s free agency has suddenly become very interesting, as he opted out of his contract with the Miami Heat in order to become an unrestricted free agent. Now, there are multiple reports stating that there is mutual interest between Tucker and the Philadelphia 76ers, as the team’s President of Basketball Operations Daryl Morey and All-Star guard James Harden have close relationships with P.J. Tucker dating back to their days with the Houston Rockets.
Between being a hard-nosed defender and being a viable rebounder, Tucker has really helped change the way the power-forward position is viewed across the league. Having a tough defender and versatile player that can really fit any position is what a lot of teams now look for in their power-forward and P.J. Tucker was really one of the first over the last decade to fit this mold.
Should he sign with the 76ers this offseason, not only will the Heat take a massive hit to their frontcourt, but the Sixers will get everything they need next to Joel Embiid to be a championship threat.
#1 Miles Bridges - Restricted Free Agent
2021-22 Salary: $5,421,493 | Last Team: Charlotte Hornets | Expected: $20M to Max Contract
All indications entering free agency point towards the Charlotte Hornets resigning forward Miles Bridges to a new, high-paying contract. Not only did the team recently extend a qualifying offer to Bridges, officially making him a restricted free agent, but GM Mitch Kupchak said in a press conference on Tuesday that the team loves Miles and that they are going to “bring him back” when free agency begins.
Declining a contract extension offer of $60 million over four years ahead of the start of this past year, the 2021-22 season was a monumental win for Miles Bridges, as he is now expected to see a new nine-figure deal this summer.
Averaging 20.2 points, 7.0 rebounds, 3.8 assists and shooting 49.1% from the floor, the high-flying forward cemented his spot as the Hornets’ No. 2 option next to LaMelo Ball offensively and he was one of the breakout stars of the NBA’s 75th anniversary season.
The Detroit Pistons and some other teams around the league have interest in Bridges, but everything points towards him and the Hornets getting a long-term deal within the first few days of free agency, if not immediately.